Despite the fact that Covid-19 pandemic has affected people’s economic lives Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (Mera) has announced it has raised the prices of paraffin, diesel and petrol.
Mera public relations officer Fitina Khonje says petrol is now at K899 from K834 which is a 7.34 percent increase.
Diesel has gone up from K826 to K898, representing 8.66 percent hike, according to Mera.
Paraffin, used mostly by industry and the majority of poor households in the country, price per litter is now k719 from K613.
Mera says the new prices are effective 12 midnight.
“The price of fuel has been rising at global level hence the decision,” said Khonje.
Mera also attributed the weakening of the local currency, Kwacha to have contributed to new price hikes.
Mera director of economic regulations Chimwemwe Dunkalo said there are several factors which drives fuel prices.
Last time the prices went up, there were violent protests by minibus operators who wanted to raise fares to catch up with the covid-19 strict measures on sitting plan in their buses.
The cost of fuel has a significant impact on the pricing of goods and services; hence, Malawians—already reeling from the pressure of reduced buying power and a depreciating kwacha—will likely be affected by the fuel prices hike, according to Chancellor College-based economist Ben Kaluwa.
He said Malawi depends 100 percent on petroleum products for production—for instance, in agriculture and manufacturing industries “and a hike on petroleum products will surely have an impact and a trickle-down effect on the economy.”
Economic observers said the price hike was an indicator of worst things to come.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :